The Toolbag Baking Tutorial



Hey guys, I just wrapped up a big-ol-baking tutorial that encompasses much of the material I've written over the years on Polycount.

It's geared towards Toolbag users specifically, but contains a lot of information that is generally applicable no matter the software that you're using, which is why I'm posting it here rather than the Marmoset sub-forum.

Check it out: https://www.marmoset.co/posts/toolbag-baking-tutorial/

Replies

  • Bek
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    Bek polycounter lvl 5
    Thanks for making this; anyone looking into baking is very lucky to have such a concise and understandable resource available.

    I do have one question: Is 'handedness' a new term you've come up with? I haven't run into it before at least. There are already many terms for this (which you name in the article) such as swizzle, Y+, Y-, 'flipped', openGL, DirectX, Max, Maya — did we really need a new term? If I hadn't seen this and someone started talking about their normal maps handedness I wouldn't have a clue what they were on about. Y+ and Y- seem the most intuitive and informative of the terms to me (With Dx/OGL being the most deceptive).
  • kolayamit
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    kolayamit polycounter lvl 8
    Thank you for the tutorial, very helpful !
  • throttlekitty
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    throttlekitty Polycount Sponsor
    The term's been around for a a long time to give a physical sense to orientation, I guess. Basically make a finger gun with both hands so your thumb represents whichever up axis, and the index finger is X. It basically represents the axis widget but you look dumb waving your hands around.
  • NoRank
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    NoRank triangle
    Bek said:
    Thanks for making this; anyone looking into baking is very lucky to have such a concise and understandable resource available.

    I do have one question: Is 'handedness' a new term you've come up with? I haven't run into it before at least. There are already many terms for this (which you name in the article) such as swizzle, Y+, Y-, 'flipped', openGL, DirectX, Max, Maya — did we really need a new term? If I hadn't seen this and someone started talking about their normal maps handedness I wouldn't have a clue what they were on about. Y+ and Y- seem the most intuitive and informative of the terms to me (With Dx/OGL being the most deceptive).
    Yeah I had the same question. I'm pretty used to see direct x / open gl and Y+ / Y-. It's just a term thought.

    But anyways, nice tutorial as always.
  • EarthQuake
    Bek said:
    Thanks for making this; anyone looking into baking is very lucky to have such a concise and understandable resource available.

    I do have one question: Is 'handedness' a new term you've come up with? I haven't run into it before at least. There are already many terms for this (which you name in the article) such as swizzle, Y+, Y-, 'flipped', openGL, DirectX, Max, Maya — did we really need a new term? If I hadn't seen this and someone started talking about their normal maps handedness I wouldn't have a clue what they were on about. Y+ and Y- seem the most intuitive and informative of the terms to me (With Dx/OGL being the most deceptive).
    No, it's not a term we've made up, it's the technical name used by rendering engineers. Handedness is actually a sub-set of tangent space, which is one of the reasons why it's automatically set in Toolbag depending on your tangent choice, for instance 3DS Max tangents automatically use -Y. It get's a little murky though, standard Mikktspace uses +Y, but Unreal uses Mikktspace with -Y because they've traditionally used left handed tangents. But the tangent space code is what determines whether your renderer uses + or -Y.

    The other common terms are things that were made up to explain it to artists I think. For instance, OpenGL/DirectX makes very little sense, neither +Y or -Y is tied to OGL or DX, you can do either in both of those rendering APIs. But it's sort of easy to understand which is why it has stuck I guess.

    Also, thanks guys! I'm glad you've found it helpful, this is something I've wanted to do for a long time so I'm happy to have gotten the chance.
  • jStins
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    jStins polycounter lvl 4
    This is great. Now I have something else to be grumpy about with the youngsters. "Back in my day we had to read the technical talk stickies to learn how to bake properly. EVERY POST!"

    But seriously, nice work Joe!
  • Justo
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    Justo polycounter lvl 3
  • instg8r
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    instg8r polycounter lvl 6
    Nice write-up with easy to understand images! 
  • shogunato
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    shogunato polycounter lvl 7
    Thank you ;)
  • EarthQuake
    No problem guys, I'm glad you've found it useful!
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